Tampa, Fla. – Closing out a historic run, the NYIT volleyball program competed in the NCAA National Quarterfinal hosted at the Bob Martinez Athletic Center at the University of Tampa Thursday evening. Taking on the South Region winners Palm Beach Atlantic for both teams' first appearance in an Elite 8, the Bears dropped a three-set match (25-21, 25-18, 25-18) to conclude the 2015 campaign at 28-8 as the advancing team stands at 30-4.
Emily Mankowski was the lone player for NYIT in double-figure kills, with 10 as Karolina Moderova nearly missed out on a double double with nine kills and 16 digs despite the loss. Allison Fowler finished the season with a 1,324 assists (28 this match) to rank fourth in the record books in the single season category.
NYIT trailed by just one in the first set when a Sailfish run had them out to a five-point advantage but the Bears scored six of the next seven points to keep the game within reach and came as close as two several times. Faith Rohn of Palm Beach Atlantic notched a kill to make it set point but the Bears squeaked in two more kills from Moderova and Brock but ultimately fell 21-25.
The home team took hold of the second set to maintain a one or two point lead throughout the opening points and grabbed their four ace of the match, courtesy of Fowler to make it 12-11. Alexandra Roberts of the Sailfish contributed a service ace of her own to take a lead that they wouldn't relinquish through the remainder of the set, including five straight points to finish it at 25-18.
Palm Beach took an early lead in the third set but the Bears contributed five straight points in the form of kills from Mankowski and Guida to trail by three. NYIT fought back to close to within two at 19-17 but the Sailfish again closed the set well, winning seven of the final eight points to earn the sweep.
NYIT finishes 2015 with several marks in history, earning an East Region finals appearance, an East Region Championship title, and a trip to the program's first Elite Eight Tournament along with a 28-win season, which ties a program best record set back in 2003.
Postgame Press Conference
Provided by the NYIT Sports Information Department.